The USC Undergraduate Student Government Senate voted Wednesday night not to impeach Sen. Jacob Ellenhorn, who faced a formal complaint alleging he created a "hostile environment" for students. But senators did vote to withhold part of Ellenhorn's stipend.
The Senate held a closed hearing "for nearly three hours" on Wednesday to determine how to respond to the complaint, which was filed March 7 by USG Program Board Executive Director Diana Jimenez. She accused Ellenhorn of misusing his title and abusing his power, creating a "hostile environment" for USC students and filming a Program Board event without a proper filming permit.
USG announced the results of the vote in a statement issued late Thursday.
The allegations that the Senate considered were as follows:
- That Ellenhorn “did not utilize the proper procedures when scheduling meetings with students who felt offended by the Women’s Student Assembly.”
- That Ellenhorn “violate[d] the USC Code of Ethics by bringing in Milo Yiannopoulos, a speaker who perpetuated inflammatory claims and created a hostile environment that detracted from healthy debate.”
- That Ellenhorn “disobeyed filming codes for a Program Board event.”
The Senate found Ellenhorn at fault in all three instances, but only half of the senators felt that he should be impeached, not the two-thirds majority required. As a result of the vote on his stipend, Ellenhorn will not receive the remaining $250 of the $2,000 USG senators receive per term.
The Senate's statement emphasized that though Ellenhorn was not impeached, the senators found his actions "inappropriate and irresponsible."
Ellenhorn responded in a statement Thursday, saying he felt the Senate was punishing him for his "political views" and for speaking to the press. He said that he has donated his previous stipend payments to the Wounded Warrior Project and will make a final $250 donation despite not receiving his full stipend.
In his statement, Ellenhorn thanked those who were critical of the complaint filed against him for their "unwavering support."
The Senate wrote in its statement that it hopes its decision "serves as model [sic] for the whole organization to promote intellectually diverse dialogue without partisan bias and alienation."
According to a Daily Trojan report, all senators' terms will conclude on April 1.